Wednesday, November 25, 2015

The Good Dinosaur

This is not a sneak preview. This film has already released.

This Pixar animated Fantasy/Western/Natural Disaster/Coming of Age/Dinosaur film poses the question: What if that meteor, 65 million years ago, missed the earth & the dinosaurs survived & evolved? Arlo was born as the timid runt of the dinosaur litter to a  corn farming family. When he becomes lost in the wilds, he ends up teaming up with his wolf-boy enemy for survival & to finding his way home. The animation is absolutely amazing and stunning. This charming fun film is about facing your fears & finding your family. One caution for the very young kiddies: beware scenes of peril & the circle of life theme.

The Pixar animated short, "Sanjay's Super Team" which precedes the main attraction, is about a young boy's conflict between idolizing modern superheroes & accepting his dad's beliefs in traditional Hindu deities.

Alien gives it 3 ½ "making your mark" stars out of 4.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Secret In Their Eyes

This is not a sneak preview. This film has already released.

Colleagues (Julia Roberts, Chiwetel Ejiofor, & Nicole Kidman) at a counter terrorism task force are involved in a murder mystery that directly impacts one of their own. Told in flashbacks, these three individuals stay connected by guilt, regret, obsession, & this now 13-year-old cold case.  Will the prime suspect get away with murder? Is someone blinded by their own obsession? Is there a conspiracy to cover up the truth? Is the victim just a casualty of the war on terrorism? Will justice be served? The movie feels a bit muddled & even buries a little romance that we don't actually see on screen, but the film may still keep you guessing outcome until the end.  

Alien gives it 2 ½ "Pacman" stars out of 4.

Monday, November 23, 2015


Set in the 1960s London, it's the true story of the Kray twins, Reggie, the gangster prince of the East End & Ron, the one-man mob. Tom Hardy is outstanding playing both brothers convincingly: one who is classy on the surface but all gangster underneath & the other is a violent psychopath with paranoid schizophrenic tendencies. Be very scared if either one of these boys gives you a funny look because they can brutally explode all over you. Through intimidation and payoffs they plot to rule London. Underneath the violence is the love story for a woman & for a brother. Alien felt the acting was exceptional, the violence extreme, & the accents a little hard to follow. 

Alien gives it 3 "lemon sherbets & mother's little helpers" stars out of 4. 

Saturday, November 21, 2015

The 33

This is not a sneak preview. This film has already released.

This is the true story of the 2010 Chilean mine disaster trapping 33 men 2,300 feet underground and the monumental effort to rescue them. Antonio Banderas stars as "Super" Mario, the leader trying to keep morale up and his people alive little food. As days pass, emotions run high below and above ground and the expectations of any survivors grow dim. Even if you don't know about this event televised world-wide, it's not hard to guess the predictable outcome of this inspirational story of man's power of survival under extreme conditions & never giving up hope. Pictures & film footage of the real people portrayed are shown at the end of the film.

Alien gives it 3 "Mineral San Jose" stars out of 4.

Love the Coopers

This is not a sneak preview. This film has already released.

Four generations of Coopers gather for their annual holiday meal each dragging their own personal baggage to the dinner table. This all-star cast includes Diane Keaton, John Goodman, Marisa Tomei, Olivia Wilde, Ed Helms, Alan Arkin, June Squibb, Amanda Seyfried, & Anthony Mackie.   It's their love/hate relationship that binds them together & drives each other crazy. You'll laugh & you'll cry with the Coopers as they stress though this special time of year. In the end, they realize the true meaning of family & the holiday spirit.

Alien gives it 3 "secrets & lies" stars out of 4.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015


Upset that their parents (James Brolin & Dianne Wiest) are downsizing & selling their childhood home, two sisters, one loose & childish and one uptight & divorced (Tina Fey & Amy Poehler), decide to throw one last wild bash there. Fey & Poehler are hilarious as struggling adult siblings trying to recapture their high school party days and find a new direction in life. John Leguizamo, John Cena, and many SNL cast members join in this outrageous house party gone wrong. This film is rated "R" for drugs, sexual content, & language. Fey & Poehler have great comedic timing & chemistry together and make this raunchy romp work.

Alien gives it 3 "Ellis Island Revamped" stars out of 4

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2

Let the 76th Hunger Games begin. In this 4th & final Hunger Games film, the rebels from the districts united and try to take the Capitol. This is an action-packed special effects driven thriller with our squad of heroes on a suicide mission to eliminate President Snow while facing booby traps & danger lurking around every corner. Who will die & who will survive? Will Katniss become a martyr for the cause or will she finally find happiness after being exploited as a political pawn? 

Alien gives it 3 "Holo & the Pods" stars out of 4.

The Night Before

Three best friends, an orphan, an expecting father, & a jock, (Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogan, & Anthony Mackie) decide to celebrate one last Christmas Eve reunion together ending their 14 year tradition of debauchery & hilarity. This is a politically incorrect film that pokes fun at Xmas holiday themes, celebrity athletes, parenthood, and relationships. Michael Shannon steals his scenes as Mr. Green who takes each of our guys on a trip with the weed of Christmas past, present, & future. This raunchy Christmasy romp is rated "R" for some nudity, sexual content, drug use, and language. Look for some surprise faces to pop up. If you like your holiday seasonal films untraditional and "Bad Santa" funny, this movie maybe be somewhere on your naughty or nice list.

Alien gives it 2 ½ "Nutcracker Ball" stars out of 4.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015


Growing up in foster homes, Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan) has a chip on his shoulder & is always getting himself into fights until he learns he is the son of Apollo Creed & is taken in by Apollo's wife (Phylicia Rashad). This is a Rocky-esque story as it pays tribute to the Balboa/Creed films returning to Micky's gym in Philadelphia & that classic underdog setup. Of course, Sylvester Stalone is terrific reprising role as the aging Rocky but now becomes Adonis' trainer. This is essentially a reboot with a twist.

Alien gives it 3 "Baby Creed, False Creed, or the Real Deal" stars out of 4.

Monday, November 09, 2015

My All American

This is an inspirational story about a young man who was thought to be too short to play football but his spirit & determination was too big to stop him. Freddie Joe Steinmark (Finn Wittrock) was a young man with a plan who always gave 110% to fulfill his visions. Steinmark was the child, sibling, friend, player, and teammate that everyone wish they had. This is Wittrock's second real life portrayal of an incredible individual of inner strength & faith (Unbroken) and he nails it again. This movie is also a terrific football story capturing some of college football's climatic moments in history. Some photos & a clip of Freddie Steinmark play at the end of the movie.

Alien gives it 3 ½ "Hook 'em Longhorns" stars out of 4.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?